We are halfway through the darkest part of the year AND the whole Fredericksburg area is covered in 18 inches of snow! This is primetime for the winter blues to settle in. You know, the dreary ho-hum we feel during the last long, grey stretch of winter. Too much cold. Too much dark. Too much of the same routine. If you feel yourself a little down in the dumps lately, we've rounded up a list of ways to brighten your mood!
Winter blues are different than seasonal affective disorder (S.A.D). If you believe you may be suffering from S.A.D or depression, please reach out for help.
Top Ten Ways To Beat The Winter Blues
1) Exercise- Get up and get your blood pumping! Exercise releases endorphins and reduces stress. You don't need to do anything elaborate, either. A short walk or dropping down for a handful of push-ups can work wonders!
2) Get some sun- Many of us leave for work in the dark and come home in the dark. The lack of sunlight we experience in wintertime can do a number on our moods and overall health. If possible, try to get out of the office during your lunch break. Investing in a solar lamp may help as well.
3) Cut back on sugar- Sugar suppresses your immune system and can cause mood altering crashes. Slowly reduce the amount of sugar you eat and reap the benefits!
4) Talk to someone you haven’t connected with in awhile- Don’t text. Dial you phone and call an old friend, your grandma, your favorite aunt, etc. Reconnect with people you love that you don’t get a chance to see on a regular basis. Bonus points if you make plans to meet up in person!
5) Plan a fun night out… or in!- Having something fun to look forward to can help brighten a dreary day. Check out these ideas for Girls Night Out in Fredericksburg, Brunch in The 'Burg, and here are a few Stay-At-Home Date Night ideas. We also LOVE the idea of a game night or articles club.
6) Get into a sleep routine- I know we all love to sleep in on the weekends (when our kids let us). Keeping a strict sleep routine (going to be and waking up at the same time every day) may help reduce stress, elevate sleeping issues, and boost your overall mood. Obviously, parents of babies and toddlers can just skip ahead to number 7.
7) Vitamin D – Studies have shown that a lack of Vitamin D can cause mood swings and well… the blues. Getting more sun, taking a supplement, and eating more foods rich in vitamin D may help. As always, please consult a doctor before starting supplements or changing your diet.
8) Get out of town- Plan a fun trip; even if it’s just a few miles out of Fredericksburg! Sometimes a change of scenery is all you need.
9) Bring in a fresh, vibrant scent – Who doesn't’t love a little aromatherapy? Fill you home with a happy scent and breathe deeply. We suggest buying you favorite flowers, lighting a soy candle, or even warming up a few essential oils.
10) Get lost in a new story – Start a new book, podcast, or Netflix marathon. Whatever gets imagination moving! We suggest sticking to lighthearted comedies and dramas if you’re really struggling with the blues.